Melted into a silver hoop and coated in diamonds was a beautiful piece of art. Laid in a velvet box, it was waiting to be exposed. It was to sparkle in the recipient's eyes, as it's own eye struck the sun. To begin a bond. It was the ring that would keep them together. How it longed to slide upon the skin.
It was a rainy spring day in Paris. A young man, almost thirty, walked through the halls of a college. He stopped at a door and made eye contact with the elder sitting in his desk.
"Ah, Arthur. What brings you here?" he asked. "Ariadne's not here."
"I know. I came to see you." Arthur told him, removing his fedora. "I have a favor to ask."
"Well what is it?" Miles scanned through a student's homework. A velvet box was brought to his attention. It opened like an oyster holding a pearl.
"I'm going to ask her to marry me." He said. Miles observed the diamond band.
"My goodness." The Professor was in slight disbelief. "You want to marry?"
"I know I said before that my job was my life. But now I have a reason why it isn't."
"She's changed you."
"Actually, I haven't changed at all." Arthur insisted. "The girl of my dreams just didn't appear until two years ago."
"It hit you like lightning, didn't it?" Arthur snapped the box shut and put it back in his suit pocket. As Miles said that, thunder boomed in the distance.
"Yes." Arthur smiled. "She's the woman of my dreams."
"Well Arthur, you really sound like Romeo now. When I first met you, I saw you to be more of a Tybalt."
"Are you afraid we'll end up like Cobb and Mal?" he asked. "Ariadne told me."
"In ways, yes. I am afraid."
"We learned from their mistakes." Said Arthur. "We don't spend our time together in dreams. Only in reality. When we're not working, that briefcase is locked away."
Miles breathed heavily. "So how can I help you?"
"I need you to draw me a maze."
"A maze? Aren't you proposing to her?"
"Yes, but I'm not just taking her out somewhere nice and getting down on the knee." Arthur explained. "I'm going to give her that maze to solve. When she looks at this maze, she's going to see the message, 'Ariadne, will you marry me?' in it."
"Well that's pretty damn clever." Miles complemented. "I never thought you had imagination."
"Only a little."
"Well if that's the plan then I'll do it. When do you want it by?"
"As soon as possible. I plan to ask her by the Eiffel Tower."
Arthur was surprised to get Miles's call the next morning. He didn't think he would finish to maze. He went to the school and picked it up. Looking at it, he thought it was perfect. Ariadne could not say no.
"Hey Ariadne, where are you?" he asked.
"I just left the gym. Why?"
"Meet me by the Eiffel Tower in an hour."
Ariadne cleaned up and took a cab to the famous landmark. Looking forward on the enormous lawn, she saw a man in a suit waving his arm in the air.
"What is this?" she chuckled. Below Arthur's feet was a picnic blanket with red wine and sandwiches he prepared himself.
"Just a little lunch by the tower tattooed on your hip."
Ariadne laughed again as he referenced her only tattoo. "I told you I had it done before I met you."
"I know." Arthur threw off his hat.
"I just burned at least a million calories kickboxing." She said. "My arms still hurt."
"Really?" Arthur slipped out the maze from under the blanket. It was spread over a thin board. "Because I picked this maze up, thinking you'd want to try it."
"It looks tricky." Ariadne observed the lines. "You have a pen?"
Arthur handed her one of his six hundred dollar Louis Vitton pens. Ariadne had her eyes locked on the maze.
"This is so tough, where's the ex-" she stopped. "Oh my God. Does this say what I think it says?"
"I don't know." Arthur brought out the box. "Here's a hint."
Her fingers uncurled and the maze fell out of her hands. Those hands closed over her mouth. She was nodding her head as if she was too afraid to speak. The eye of the ring met her shocked eyes.
"Oh my God, yes!" she finally exclaimed. "Of course!"
Arthur smirked as he brought the ring out. Its eye glinted a series of rainbow colors in the spring sun. As it impatiently waited weeks, it finally got a touch of soft skin. Ariadne kissed him, putting both hands on his face. Arthur's hands went around her waist as he fell backward into the grass.
Well, what else would people expect to see in the City of Lovers?